Alan Simpson must be a serious moderate Republican—after all, President Obama appointed him to co-chair his debt commission. Well here’s what this moderate said Friday: “I can’t wait for the blood bath in April. … We’ve got guys who will not approve the debt limit extension unless we give ‘em a piece of real, real meat.” Translation, courtesy of Paul Krugman of the New York Times: Republicans intend “to blackmail the president into policy concessions by, in effect, holding the government hostage.”
Unless the federal debt limit is extended in April, the entire government will shut down. Simpson apparently “can’t wait” for this catastrophe. “And he’s what passes, these days, for a reasonable Republican.” It’s emblematic of a major problem in this country: “One of our two great political parties has no interest in making America governable.” Ben Bernanke recently asked Congress to take action to boost the economy while slimming long-term deficits. “My immediate thought was, why not ask for a pony, too?” quips Krugman.